Cheltenham Festival 2022 Blue Riband Race Tips – Seymour Biz

Cheltenham is almost upon us and trying to find winners in a normal week can be pretty daunting but trying to find them when you have several hundred to choose from, most of whom are the cream of the best training centres in the UK and Ireland the task becomes a damn sight harder. Will the Irish horses trounce the British ones once again like they did last year?

I personally have my doubts. I think the British trainers have learned their lesson and have studied the Dublin Festival and know what they are up against from across the water. I have decided to look at the Blue Riband races on each of the four days, the Champion Hurdle, the Champion Chase, the Ryanair and the Gold Cup.

This year each of these races has an odds-on favourite and a £1 Yankee would only return £38 if they all won. If just one gets beat you may just about get your money back so it may pay to look further down the betting for a decent priced outsider who pays a quarter of the odds for a place or even spring a surprise and come home the winner.

Perhaps you may also want to check as several of these horses are multi declared and it may pay to have a small investment on them should they appear in a different race. So here are my thoughts on the big races at this year’s Festival. Good Luck everyone.

Cheltenham Championship Race Lucky 15 Tip

Champion Hurdle. Tommy’s Oscar
Champion Chase. Politologue
Ryanair. Eldorado Allen
Gold Cup. Chantry House

Champion Hurdle

Probably the biggest cert of the week is on the first day in the Champion Hurdle with Henry de Bromhead’s fabulous mare Honeysuckle who has got a perfect record of 14 races and 14 wins. She is short odds-on and it’s basically a case of looking what will follow her home or even who may take her on.

The obvious candidate is Appreciate It, Willie Mullins’s star hurdler won the Supreme Novices last year but he has not been on a racecourse since that victory.

Gordon Elliott’s Teahupoo has won all three of his races this season latterly the Gowan Park Trial by 11 lengths and could go well on his first run at Cheltenham.

David Pipe runs Adagio who won a Grade 1 at Chepstow in January last year then ran second in the Triumph Hurdle. His trainer is disappointed he hasn’t followed up on that this season.

Nicky Henderson is very upbeat about his mare’s Epatante chances after she ran third this last year. She has won both her races this season, including the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton. She is not without a chance.

But what a fairy story we could have if small trainer Ann Hamilton’s Tommy’s Oscar could be victorious. He is a winner of his last four races improving on each occasion. Latterly, he easily won a Grade 2 at Haydock. He can possibly improve again to challenge these big guns at a nice price.

Queen Mother Champion Chase

Wednesday sees the Queen Mother Champion Chase where Nicky Henderson’s Shishkin is the short-priced favourite. He has won the Supreme Novices and the Arkle in successive years at the Festival so the course holds no worries for him. This season, he is two from two after a health scare, a formidable champion.

Willie Mullins’s Energumeme looked to be Shishkin’s main challenger after winning easily in Cork in December but Henderson’s horse dealt with him contemptuously in the Clarence House at Ascot handing him the only defeat of his career. Will Mullin’s change tactics?

But Mullins has another horse with a great chance, the 10-year-old Chacun Pour Soi. Although he ran last of five in the Tingle Creek at Sandown in December, he has bounced back with an easy win in the Dublin Chase in February.

Dan Skelton’s Nube Negra was second in this last year and proved he loves the course by winning the Scloer Chase last November. His poor run in the Tingle Creek can be forgiven.

But what of last year’s winner Henry de Bromhead’s Put The Kettle On who has shown very little this season trailing in last at Fairyhouse on New Year’s Day? That was a very poor effort. Can de Bromhead resurrect his career?

Paul Nicholls’s Politologue was the winner of this in 2020 and he went on to win the Tingle Creek that year. His only run this season was in the Shloer Chase in November where he was headed after two out but he kept on up the run-in. Nicholls will be praying the heavens open for his big grey who jumps for fun and would have a great chance in the mud.

Ryanair Chase

Thursday sees the Ryanair and yet another hot favourite in the shape of Willie Mullins’s Allaho who won this race last year. After that he was dropped in distance to compete in the Champion Chase at Punchestown where he ran second, this season he has reverted to this distance and is two from two but he may face a higher class field than he did last year. Could owner Tony Bloom want Mullins to send Energumeme here instead of the Champion Chase so to avoid Shishkin after Energumeme’s defeat in the Clarence House, that would be interesting. Henry de Bromhead’s A Plus Tard may want to avoid Galvin in the Gold Cup and go for the Ryanair but this is not really his distance. Gordon Elliott’s Conflated has come to the fore after winning at Navan in December but he then shocked everyone by winning the Irish Gold Cup beating Mullins’s Minella Indo and Kemboy in the process, he may go for the big prize here at Cheltenham. Fanion d’Estruval was beaten 54 lengths into fifth in this last year an Venetia Williams’s gelding has not really shown anything thing this year to see him improve on that. Another Mullins contender, Chacun Pour Soi, was third in last year’s Champion Chase and he was victorious in Leopardstown’s Dublin Chase over 2m 1f in February but he would be coming here without a run over this distance. But among all these Irish champions I will give Colin Tizzard’s Eldorado Allen a chance after his second to Shishkin in last year’s Arkle. Since then he is two from four but his latest win was in the Denman Chase at Newbury and that was an excellent piece of form justifying his place here.

The Cheltenham Gold Cup

So we come to the main race of the Festival, the race every owner, trainer and jockey wants to to win – The Cheltenham Gold Cup. The very hot favourite is Gordon Elliott’s Galvin who won the National Hunt Challenge Cup at last year’s Festival since then he has been beaten by Frodon at Down Royal and in his only outing since then he was victorious in the Savills Chase at Leopardstown, whether not having a run since Christmas I’m not sure of. Last year’s winner, Henry de Bromhead’s Minella Indo, returns for another crack but he hasn’t shown that form since and has been unsuccessful in all three of his contests this season. Willie Mullins’s Al Boum Photo was victorious in 2019 and 2020 but he is a 10-year-old now however he showed he still retains some ability by winning a small race at Tramore on New Year’s Day. Dan Skelton’s Protektorat has been supported after his second in the Paddy Power in November and since then he has won at Aintree. Polly Gundry now trains Santini who was pulled up in this last year but he was second in 2020, perhaps a change of trainer will blow fresh life into him after all he is only a lightly raced 10-year-old, his latest run was a good second in the the Cotswold Chase in January. However the horse that beat him that day was Nicky Henderson’s Chantry House who has shown some good form this season except for being inexplicably pulled up in the King George at Kempton on Boxing Day when hating the course. He won the Marsh Novices last year and showed Cheltenham holds no worries for him by his win in the Cotswold Chase, Henderson will be hoping for a bold run.

Cheltenham Championship Race Lucky 15 Tip

Champion Hurdle. Tommy’s Oscar
Champion Chase. Politologue
Ryanair. Eldorado Allen
Gold Cup. Chantry House
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